Gain the skills you need to help create a positive learning environment for children. With our online Early Childhood Education (ECE) Certificate, you can lay the foundation for a career as an educator working with young children in as few as 9 to 12 months.1 You will also be academically prepared to apply for the Child Development Associate (CDA) credential during your certificate courses—allowing you to build your resume while you complete your program.
Our ECE programs do not prepare students for licensed teaching positions in any public school setting, but students will have the opportunity to help shape the futures of young children from birth to age eight in a childcare and non-public school setting or leadership role.
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Apply for the CDA
This program's Early Childhood Education courses are aligned to the standards of the Child Development Associate (CDA) credential. Students will be academically prepared during their courses to apply for the CDA credential.
Advance Your Education
Rasmussen University’s ladder curriculum allows you to easily transfer your credits toward an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education. Upon receiving your Associate's degree, you can transfer those credits toward an ECE Bachelor’s degree.
Pursue Potential Job Growth
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the yearly projected job growth potential between 2018 and 2028 for childcare workers is 2%.2 Enhanced skills and knowledge from Rasmussen University can help set you up for success in this growing field.
Use your knowledge and skills to work with young children from birth to age eight in a childcare and non-public school setting.
Ability to Adapt
Help children learn and develop their skills and knowledge in a variety of entry-level roles and settings.
Planning and Reflection
Based on real, practical experiences in your courses, you will observe and implement developmentally appropriate practices while interacting with children and adults.
Value the ability to effectively communicate in a variety of situations, from the workplace to your communities and families whose children are in your care.
- EEC 1202
- 4 Credits
- EEC 1700
- 4 Credits
- EEC 2613
- 4 Credits
Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction
Promotes the development of young children in the academic, social and emotional domains. Examines developmentally appropriate methods for writing and assessing behavioral objectives, lesson plans and activity goals.
Foundations of Child Development
Explores characteristics of children at different ages, children’s developmental needs and the foundation of early childhood education. You'll learn the fundamentals of developmentally appropriate practices as it relates to child development, individual needs, building self-esteem in children and using interpersonal skills and communication within the program or setting.
Observation and Assessment in Early Childhood Education
Explores effective strategies for observation and assessment in early childhood education. You'll learn to understand the observation, assessment and planning cycle and its impact on promoting children’s development.
11 Courses to Complete
36 Credit Hours
Additional Ways to Save
While we aim to reduce your tuition through our own scholarships, military tuition grants, credit transfer policies, and other ways to help you save on your education—we encourage you to seek outside scholarships as well.
You can also receive course waivers if you have earned specific professional credentials:
Florida Child Care Professionals Credential (FCCPC)
Florida Early Childhood Professional Credential (ECPC)
Florida Child Care Apprenticeship Credential (CCAC)
Wisconsin Infant and Toddler Credential
Wisconsin Preschool Credential
Wisconsin Administration Credential
Wisconsin Leadership Credential
AIM4Excellence Director Credential
CDA Credential awarded by the Council for Professional Recognition
For more information, please view the School of Education Waivers from the course waiver section in the course catalog.
MN T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Scholarship ProgramT.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® MINNESOTA is a scholarship program that helps early childhood and school-age care providers increase their levels of education, compensation and commitment to the field by earning college credits and degrees.
WI T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Scholarship ProgramT.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® WISCONSIN provides higher education scholarships to professionals who work in regulated early childhood and school-age care settings.
FL T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Scholarship ProgramT.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® FLORIDA provides scholarships for early childhood teachers and facility/family home directors to work toward earning an Associate’s, Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in early childhood education, a Florida Staff Credential, a Director Credential, a National CDA Assessment or credential renewals.
IL Gateways Scholarship Program
The Gateways Scholarship Program will pay a portion of tuition for eligible professionals working in early care and education or school-age programs who want to earn college credit, credentials or degrees.
As an entitled institution, Rasmussen University has aligned coursework to the IL Gateways Credentials. More information on the IL Gateways Credentials can be found here.
There's no application fee and you can get started sooner with 8 start dates throughout the year.
Entrance requirements at the Rasmussen University School of Education vary depending on the program. We do not require enrolling students to submit standardized test scores; however, every entrant must have at least a high school diploma or the equivalent.
We believe in giving credit where it’s due. Prospective students can transfer credits and receive course waivers in this ECE program. For example, if you already have your CDA credential, you may be eligible to transfer up to 12 credits toward your certificate. Talk to an admissions advisor today or explore our Transfer Policy page to review our seamless credit policies designed to maximize credits, potentially save money and expedite graduation.
Help Paying for College
Higher education should be a manageable investment. Talk to an admissions advisor and learn how these programs can make it more affordable with Flex Choice® learning options, loans and grants, scholarship opportunities, and corporate and military discounts for those who qualify.
- Completion time is dependent on transfer credits accepted and the number of courses completed each term.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, [career information accessed May 1, 2020] www.bls.gov/ooh/. Employment conditions in your area may vary.